A centre for research into serious diseases and their complications

Implemented

As a non-profit organisation, MGA is part of a consortium of partners engaged in biomedical research focused on the identification of genetic determinants leading to serious diseases. In this particular case, the research aims to find associations between genetic transformations and retinopathy in patients suffering from diabetes mellitus. To meet the scheduled research objectives, a dedicated infrastructure embracing organisation, equipment, and human resources was created. MGA’s primary goal was to create a functional biobank containing DNA samples obtained from diabetes mellitus patients who have been diagnosed with retinopathy based on diabetic and ophthalmic screening.

Minarik“During project implementation, we became convinced that complex biomedical research using state-of-the-art clinical, laboratory and ICT methods can only be carried out by a multidisciplinary team of researchers. Our clinical information database and the extensive biobank containing thousands of biological samples allow us to develop further research projects with great potential to bring globally applicable findings related to serious diabetes mellitus-associated health complications, particularly retinopathy. Our pilot samples have been sucessfully analysed, which suggests good prospects of identifying new biomarkers related to these serious complications applicable in routine clinical diagnostics and prognosis.“

RNDr. Gabriel Minárik, PhD., Project Coordinator

 

More details on the purpose of the project

Lifestyle diseases are the most common cause of premature mortality in the developed world. State-of-the-art research centres abroad have been working intensely to obtain the most detailed information possible on what causes such diseases and their complications to appear and develop further. Today, we are witnessing an extreme growth of methods focused on analysing the genetic determinants of such diseases, as well as their use in clinical practice. The identification process involves validation that requires the use of not only biological methods, but also information technology tools. However, it is prerequisite that these diseases are first clinically characterised in detail because their heterogeneity does not make it possible for us to consider any new usable biomarkers for diagnostic, prognostic, and therapeutic purposes without detailed characteristics. This means that multidisciplinary research using state-of-the-art laboratory and ICT methods is of paramount importance.

The project involved the establishment of a consortium, which managed to create a complex clinical information database containing detailed phenotype parameters associated with the development of diabetes mellitus and the occurrence of diabetic retinopathy. Furthermore, the project saw the creation of an extensive biobank containing samples from more than 4,000 patients and facilitating further research in this area as we speak. Pilot analytical studies were carried out with success, focusing on the implementation of molecular genetics and genomic sequencing methods with a view to identifying any genetic determinants that might be of prognostic and/or predictive value in diabetic patients with regard to the onset and development of diabetic retinopathy. At the same time, using information technology for processing heterogeneous data resources, we were also able to use the obtained medical data to support a complex management of patients’ health condition and create metabolic glucose-insulin models that help us understand the mechanisms behind the development and prediction of the diseases under scrutiny.

 

Sustainability

The equipment procured as part of the project is used for research purposes.

Publicity:

  • Open Days of MEDIREX GROUP Laboratories in Bratislava
  • Biomedires 2016

Project Output

Priščáková, P., Gbelcová, H., Krajčíová, Ľ., Oravcová, L., Gašparová, I., Minárik, G., Böhmer, D., Repiská, V.

Úloha vaskulárneho endoteliálneho rastového faktoru v rozvoji diabetickej retinopatie: Čerpajme z minulosti, ktorá nás navedie na budúcnosť [The role of the vascular endothelial growth factor in the development of diabetic retinopathy: Let the past show us the future], ISBN 978-80-89747-06-1. – Bratislava: Proprint, 2015

Priščáková, P., Repiská, V., Hojsíková, I.

Diabetická retinopatia a jej genetické pozadie [Diabetic retinopathy and its genetic background] In: Trendy v biomedicínskom výskume [Trends in biomedical research] 2015, ISBN 978-80-971042-4-5

Pavlíková, G.,  Tomášová, R., Tomka, M., Hojsíková, I.

Doba laboratórna [The age of the laboratory]

Newslab, 2015; Vol. 2(1): 5–6

Tomášová, R., Pavlíková, G., Tomka, M., Hojsíková, I.

Odysea čítania DNA [The odyssey of DNA reading] Newslab, 2015; Vol. 2(1): 7–10

Pavlíková G., Tomášová, R., Tomka, M., Hojsíková, I.

Izolácia a uchovávanie DNA [DNA isolation and storing]

labMED 04/15

Prisčáková, P., Gbelcová, H., Krajčiová, Ľ., Hojsíková, I., Repiská, V.

Genetické a environmentálne faktory vplývajúce na rozvoj diabetickej retinopatie [Genetic and environmental factors affecting the development of diabetic retinopathy] In: Priemyselná toxikológia [Industrial toxicology] 2015 [digital source]. – ISBN 978-80-227-4377-8. – Bratislava : STU, 2015. – p. 223

Partners

Beneficiary: Novartis Slovakia

Partners:

  • MEDIREX GROUP ACADEMY
  • ANEXT
  • Univerzita Komenského v Bratislave [J. A. Komenský University in Bratislava]
  • Slovenská technická univerzita v Bratislave [Slovak University of Technology in Bratislava]

Activities

  • To develop the centre’s organisational structures, strategies and research management.
  • To execute the pilot phase of joint excellence research in an effective way:
    • To establish and run an extensive biobank of samples from 5,000 diabetic patients for the purposes of the research planned within the project (Partner 1).
    • To work out an effective procedure of genetic analysis focused on identifying genomic transformations associated with specific forms of diabetic retinopathy – a pilot study (Partner 3/Partner 1).
    • To carry out haplotype analysis of mitochondrial DNA in the specified group of patients with a view to identifying potentially phenotype-genotype-based correlations – a pilot study (Partner 3).
    • To develop analytical methods based on heterogeneous medical data resources with a view to supporting a complex management of patients’ health condition (Partner 2/Partner 4).

To produce metabolic glucose-insulin models that facilitate a better understanding of the mechanisms behind the development and prediction of diseases (Partner 4)

Publicity

The following is a list of events at which we discussed the goals and importance of the project with laypeople and professionals:

  • Biomedires International Workshop,
  • The Researchers’ Night,
  • Open Days at MEDIREX GROUP Laboratories,
  • MEDIREX GROUP for youth,

Haematology seminar.

Procurement

https://www.uvo.gov.sk/vyhladavanie-zakaziek/detail/dokumenty/136368

Lambda Life purchase contract

Contracts

  • Contract on the Provision of Specialised Services between MGA and Geneton
  • Cooperation Agreement between MGA and MDX
  • Contract on the Provision of Specialised Services between MGA and SEMBID